Asthma quick-relief tablets work fast to control asthma symptoms. You take them when you are coughing, wheezing, having trouble breathing, or having an asthma attack. They are also called rescue pills.
Prevention and long-term control are key in stopping asthma attacks before they start. Treatment usually involves learning to recognize your triggers, taking steps to avoid them and tracking your breathing to make sure your daily asthma medications are keeping symptoms under control.
The right medications for you depend on a number of things - your age, symptoms, asthma triggers and what works best to keep your asthma under control.
Preventive, long-term control medications reduce the inflammation in your airways that leads to symptoms. In some cases, allergy medications are necessary.
Long-term asthma control medications, generally taken daily, are the cornerstone of asthma treatment. These medications keep asthma under control on a day-to-day basis and make it less likely you'll have an asthma attack.
You may need to use allergy tablets for several days to weeks before they reach their maximum benefit.
In rare cases, these medications have been linked to psychological reactions, such as agitation, aggression, hallucinations, depression and suicidal thinking. Seek medical advice right away for any unusual reaction.
Your treatment should be flexible and based on changes in your symptoms, which should be assessed thoroughly each time you see your doctor. Then your doctor can adjust your treatment accordingly.
For example, if your asthma is well-controlled, your doctor may prescribe less medicine. If your asthma isn't well-controlled or is getting worse, your doctor may increase your medication and recommend more-frequent visits.
Work with your doctor to create an asthma action plan that outlines in writing when to take certain medications or when to increase or decrease the dose of your medications based on your symptoms. Also include a list of your triggers and the steps you need to take to avoid them.
Your doctor may also recommend tracking your asthma symptoms or using a peak flow meter on a regular basis to monitor how well your treatment is controlling your asthma.